Le Tene (Switzerland) Sword
Valkyrie Golden Viper Cult
ca. 400 BC
Vipers run from the hilt to the point and return
They remind you that:
"Death flows from hand to victim,
then its bitterness flows back as a realization"
Excerpt from Valkyries, Harpies, Angles, and Mother Goose:
Prehistoric survival required knowledge of approximate astronomy, largely based on knowledge of the location of north; at one time true north was not the North Star, but Cygnus, the swan constellation in the Milky Way. This constellation is at the root of many bird mythologies. The importance of this knowledge was preserved in symbol and in tradition – feathered cloaks, bird goddesses, and fairies wings are a few symbolic remnants.
During the Paleolithic Era, 12,500 BC, mythologies and oral tradition began to symbolize the human condition. Stories about storks bringing babies, swans nurturing and comforting babies, and taking their young souls to heaven if they died, represented the importance of these animals in the life sustaining cycles of the time. These stories connected birds with true North – Cygnus the Swan. By 9000 BC, during the Allerød, “mother” swans appear, anthropomorphic creatures created to symbolize the nurturing and protecting of little ones by nature and mothers. During the Boreal, 7000 BC, the mother-swans became human mothers with beautiful wings; these zoomorphic creatures became goddess-like in their cultural role. By 5000 BC, swan-mothers also comforted, protected, and escorted the souls of dead, brave young men to heaven.
By 450 AD these swan-ladies became Valkyries, beautiful war-like loyal women at the battlefield, fighting alongside the men, taking the souls of dead soldiers to heaven. Valkyries are associated with the bright rays of the sun - the Fire of the Valkyries. Golden-haired women, with dazzling white arms and armor; they accompanied the brave fighters on the battlefield, riding swift horses or wolves during conflicts and wars. During more peaceful times, Valkyries became family-oriented beings who married, had babies, and nurtured the good.
These golden haired ladies of the battle became legendary warriors, with swords and spears, and could decide the course of a battle, escorting heroes to Valhalla over Bitfrost (the rainbow). The heroes received mead (ambrosia) and were dressed in shining robes which are associated with clouds. Over time Valkyries became the ones to decide who was slain. Nymphs from Wotan’s (Odin’s) palace, messengers of the gods, and war-leaders, these beautiful women incited heroes to battle by their love and bravery, guided the soldiers, and tended to the wounded and the souls of the dead. They became known as Odin’s Warriors of Asgard (now lake Azov, north of the Black Sea).
About Symbologist Michelle Snyder
Michelle earned her post-graduate degree at the University of Wales, decoding prehistoric images, mythology, folklore, and fairy tales and tracing them to their roots. She is an author, columnist, publisher, artist, and teacher. Her artwork, inspired by her love of symbolism and folklore, has appeared in galleries from Massachusetts to California. Michelle is co-owner of White Knight Studio.
Books by Michelle, available at Amazon:
Symbology ReVision: Unlocking Secret Knowledge
Symbology: Hidden in Plain Sight
Symbology: My Art and Symbols
Symbology: My Art and Symbols
Symbology: Fairy Tales Uncovered
Symbology: Decoding Classic Images
Symbology: World of Symbols